5 Cities That Could Be Wiped Off the Map by Catastrophic Natural Disasters (Videos)

(N.Morgan) No matter how technologically advanced our society becomes, we will always be vulnerable targets to Mother Nature’s unrelenting fury.

There are some people who chose to live in the high risks areas of just such disasters, knowing each day they may be up against a devastating natural disaster.

5. New York Is Due for a Hurricane Stronger Than Sandy or Irene

New York has become rather notorious in its high crime, seedy streets and most unfortunate, terrorist attacks.

However, there is another danger no one ever mentions, the high probability of a massive hurricane.

Many people were unaware that New York in a hurricane territory, until suddenly the city was slammed by hurricanes Irene and Sandy.

The devastation flooded subways, collapsed several buildings and left billions of dollars in damages. Yet, these hurricanes will pale in comparison to what may be down the road.

Both hurricanes were only Category 1 when they hit, meaning that they were not that powerful — even though they still left the region in shambles. Some of the damage still lays in disrepair.

New York City stands a very good chance of being hit by a category 3 Hurricane this decade. A Category 3 hurricane is defined by the phrase “Devastating damage will occur.”

We’re talking demolished houses, damaged skyscrapers, and destroyed infrastructure.

JFK airport would be left under 19 feet of water, according to experts.

Because of New York’s unique geography, Northeast New Jersey and Western Long Island form a bottleneck for hurricanes to pass right into. Essentially, any storm with great intensity has a decent chance of a direct hit.

This subjects the city to far worse things than just a “mere” Category 3: New York’s near future can very well see a full-on  hurricane of the Category 5 classification.

Destruction wise, this storm would be a dozen times worse than a Category 3.

What Can Be Done?

New York authorities are fully aware of the risks facing the city and have taken the appropriate precautions to deal with any impending disaster.

Using a Category 4 hurricane as a scale for comparison, authorities have calculated that a massive hurricane would do about $500 billion worth of foreseeable damage — that is, four times as much as Hurricane Katrina managed.

A Category 2 would turn the subway into an aquarium in 40 minutes, with Grand Central and Penn Stations flooding as well.

There is also the 15-foot wall of water that is expected to hit three of the five N.Y. boroughs with all the havoc a mini-tsunami.

In conclusion, the best course of action to survive this sort of event it to evacuate to a safe location.

4. Amsterdam Lives in Constant of Massive Floods

Amsterdam is the capital and most populous municipality of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

It is a beautiful city that boasts hundreds of years of history and wonderful art museums.

Amsterdam is also well known for its lacks marijuana laws and hash bars.

The city also faces the unpredictable risk of being gobbled up by the ocean.

Most of Netherlands resides below sea level, and if anything, anywhere, goes wrong, Amsterdam will take an entire ocean right in the face.

Subsequently, the map of the Netherlands would look a little something like this:

See the black blip labeled “Amsterdam” that’s right in the middle of the blue?

That’s what happens if just one of the various, intricate fail-safe barriers and dams surrounding the country goes down.

Not only the city (highest point: seven feet above sea level), but in fact much of the entire country (lowest point: minus 23 feet) is at constant risk of being claimed by the sea.

The good news is, Amsterdam is an old hand at battling the ocean and the authorities have actually set up the elaborate network that is keeping them safe.

The bad news: They absolutely blow at keeping said network up to date.

In fact, only 50 percent of the defenses are somewhat capable of handling their task of keeping people’s feet dry.

The Netherlands had their latest hazardous flood defense failure in 2010, and rest assured there will be more:

Many experts are not even sure some of the dams will hold if they get just the tiniest of hairline cracks.

In this disaster scenario, the odds are too insurmountable to attempt to ride out the storm, evacuate the area and seek safe shelter elsewhere.

3. Greater Seattle Will Be Devoured by a River of Hot Mud

Seattle already faces challenges such as being prone to giant earthquakes, but the entire Greater Seattle Area also faces the risk of being buried under a sea of mud.

The area lies downstream from Mount Rainier, which is known as one of the most dangerous volcanoes in existence.

However, this particular danger doesn’t come from soot and magma — the true danger would be a lahar, whose nerdy name betrays its potential for destruction.

Lahars are giant flows of hot mud, trees and water, rolling forward with the consistency of a zillion tons of wet cement and at speeds up to 60mph.

Lahar can be massive: Urban Seattle could be facing a Lahar as tall 600 feet.

This is a known fact because this sort of event has taken place before.

Around 5,000 years ago, a giant lahar called the Osceola Mudflow filled a part of Puget Sound with three cubic kilometers of hot, steamy, gooey mud.

What once was a pristine sea became, in a matter of hours, suddenly 200 square miles of new land.

For comparison, the disastrous 1985 Nevado del Ruiz lahar that killed 25,000 people in Colombia only had 2.5 percent of the volume of the Osceola Mudflow.

What Can Be Done?

A lahar detection system was installed in 1998, but it has proven to be faulty and unreliable. To make matters worse, these mud tsunamis (mudnamis!) are a right bastard to detect: a lahar doesn’t need a volcanic eruption as an excuse to kick in: A sector collapse or some magma leakage could be enough to send a mudnami the size of Godzilla into Seattle.

If just the Puyallup Valley lahar (the purple one in the above picture) sparks off, material damages alone could be as high as $13 billion.

Also, a non-volcanic lahar could easily spread from one to several of the six  Mount Rainer lahar systems, multiplying the destruction.

2. Naples Will Be Just the Latest of Mount Vesuvius’ Casualties

During the year 79, the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculanium were completely and utterly devastated as they were buried by the sudden, violent eruption of Mount Vesuvius, the Chad of volcanoes.

The carnage was witnessed by almost the entire populace, including the famed statesman Pliny the Younger, who made it his mission to tell everyone about the incident as a warning to never cross Mother Nature.

One could say the town was partically responsible for its fate, since they neglected to investigate the land more closely. If they had dug around before building, they would have discovered ash from an ancient eruption that still had fleeing footprints visible from an ancient bronze age town not too far away.

Despite Vesuvius waking up periodically for a demonstration of what happens when people ignore it, Naples pushes on.

Even when the volcano covered the city in an inch-thick layer of hot, jagged ash in 1906, killing over 100 people and causing enough expensive carnage to actually relocate the Olympics from Rome to London two years later because Vesuvius’ fury had eaten all Rome’s Olympic money.

The citizens of Naples hose to continue living in the hot zone anyway, disregarding all of the impending dangers.

When facing an angry mountain that has decimated populations since the Bronze Age, it is best to evacuate immediately.

Despite Mount Vesuvius having reaffirmed the danger it posed to them with literally dozens of eruptions since the Pompeii incident, well up to the 20th century,the Neapolitans have chosen to remain there.

1. Wellington Will Be Hit by Everything

Nestled in the South Pacific, Wellington is the capital of New Zealand and home to over 400,000 people.

In addition to its claim to fame as Peter Jackson’s base in his mission to film all things Tolkien, the city is also notable for the surprising amount of ways it’s citizens can die by natural disaster.

Like Dhaka, the most popular pastime in Wellington seems to be guessing the next major doomsday scenario coming to kill everyone.

The city has managed to grow on a site where all bets are truly off. It sits at the tip of an island, so water is a constant threat.

The last major tsunami hit Wellington in 1946, coming in at a roar that could be heard from 15 miles away.

The chances are slim that the next tsunami will be medium in size.

Authorities warn that a 115-foot massive tsunami can definitely happen in the future.

Which is the constant fear for the residents who still haven’t recovered from the hellish flood that took place in 1984.

Water is only one of the various hazards nature is throwing at Wellington.

The city is also unfortunate enough to be located right by a gigantic fault line, with earthquakes causing damage every so often, triggering those huge tsunamis in their wake.

Add in a variety of volcanoes up north, throwing ash and soot at the city every time they decide to erupt.

What Can Be Done?

Evacuation is the only option in such a scenario.

Sadly, that’s not a possibility for a large portion of the population. Projections of just a medium-sized tsunami show utter destruction of the city’s airport, marina, and local stadium (stadiums being the evacuation shelters of choice during many a disaster), with floods turning the downtown into a Sea World.

The city does have an evacuation plan, most of the evacuation zones are in the worst risk areas, placing roughly half the population in immediate danger when disaster strikes.





12 Tornadoes Slam Indiana and Ohio (Videos and Photos)


(N.Morgan) A wave of severe storms spawned at least a dozen tornadoes in Indiana and Ohio. Homes and businesses were damaged, but there were no serious injuries reported by authorities on Thursday, as crews worked to restore power and remove fallen trees.

The National Weather Service reported an EF3 tornado hit the south side of Kokomo, Indiana, packing winds of up to 165 mph.

That tornado toppled a Starbucks coffee shop and damaged numerous homes and businesses in the city about 40 miles north of Indianapolis.

Howard County Sheriff Steve Rogers said the 10 to 15 Kokomo residents who were hurt suffered only minor injuries.

Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight divulged Thursday that about 220 people stayed overnight in a temporary shelter.

Police were restricting access to storm-damaged neighborhoods, saying residents must show identification to be able to enter.

A tornado is seen here in Komoko, Indiana, Aug. 24, 2016.

“The areas that have been hit the hardest, we’re asking people to stay away unless they absolutely have to be in those areas,” Goodnight said at a news conference, adding that he’s thankful and relieved no one was killed or seriously injured.

Tornadoes were also observed across the border in northwest Ohio.

Emergency Management Agency spokesman Jay Carey said damage was reported in Defiance, Henry, Paulding and Van Wert counties and that one person was reportedly hurt.

The worst damage appeared to be at a mobile home park in Defiance. The roads around the site were blocked late Wednesday.

Damage from storms and tornadoes are seen here in Komoko, Indiana, Aug. 24, 2016.





Beauty Unleashed By Nature (Video and Photos)

(N.Morgan) As our world is seemingly in turmoil, Nature continues to amaze us with her splendors and remind us of the beauty She shares all around us.

Sometimes I think we forget to look around and take in all that nature gives to us.

In this photo essay, I would like to share with you some of the most beautiful and mysterious place our Mother nature has graced us with.

Our first stop is to check out this phenomenon known as Volcanic Lighting or Dirty Thunderstorms

A dirty thunderstorm (also, Volcanic lightning) is a weather phenomenon that is related to the production of lightning in a volcanic plume.

A famous image of the phenomenon was photographed by Carlos Gutierrez and occurred in Chile above the Chaiten Volcano.It circulated widely on the internet.

Other instances have been reported above Alaska’s Mount Augustine volcano,and Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull volcano.

Next up is the wonders of the Frozen Air Bubbles in Abraham Lake

Abraham Lake is an artificial lake on North Saskatchewan River in western Alberta, Canada.

The lake was created in 1972, with the construction of the Bighorn Dam, and named after Silas Abraham, an inhabitant of the Saskatchewan River valley in the nineteenth century.

Abraham Lake is home to a rare phenomenon where bubbles get frozen right underneath its surface.

They’re often referred to as ice bubbles or frozen bubbles.

Photographer Fikret Onal explains the phenomenon: “The plants on the lake bed release methane gas and methane gets frozen once coming close enough to much colder lake surface and they keep stacking up below once the weather gets colder and colder during [the] winter season.

Another wonder to behold is the Underground Natural Springs of Mexico.

The Yucatan Peninsula is quite rare in its construction and distinctive, with its porous limestone shelving creating large tunnels and sinkholes reaching to the depths of the Earth.

These natural underground tunnels are called cenotes, and the Yucatan Peninsula is home to two thousand of them, often linked by underground rivers.

In ancient times, these cenotes were the primary water source, and were also symbolically significant as they were seen as passageways to the underworld.

The ethereal feeling these other-worldly rivers produce draws thousands to explore them each year.

Some of these remarkable places just seem to beautiful to exist and this next natural wonder is no exception, The Giant Crystal Cave Nacia Mexico is one of those unbelievable places.

Cave of the Crystals or Giant Crystal Cave (Spanish: Cueva de los Cristales) is a cave connected to the Naica Mine 300 metres (980 ft) below the surface in Naica, Chihuahua, Mexico.

The main chamber contains giant selenite crystals (gypsum, CaSO4·2 H2O), some of the largest natural crystals ever found.

The cave’s largest crystal found to date is 12 m (39 ft) in length, 4 m (13 ft) in diameter and 55 tons in weight.

The cave is extremely hot, with air temperatures reaching up to 58 °C (136 °F) with 90 to 99 percent humidity.

The cave is relatively unexplored due to these factors.Without proper protection, people can only endure approximately ten minutes of exposure at a time.

A group of scientists known as the Naica Project have been heavily involved in researching these caverns.

Naica lies on an ancient fault above an underground magma chamber below the cave.

The magma heated the ground water which was saturated with sulfide ions (S2−).

Cool oxygenated surface water contacted the mineral saturated heated water, but the two did not mix due to the difference in their densities.

The oxygen slowly diffused into the heated water and oxidized the sulfides (S2−) into sulfates (SO42−).

The hydrated sulfate gypsum crystallized at an extremely slow rate of over the course of at least 500,000 years forming the enormous crystals found today.

The key to this process is the slow diffusion of oxygen from the cool, low density surface water into the hot, high density ground water.

We all know how stunning the ocean can be, vast, endless and ruthless, when she feels dangerous and unruly.

However this next place resembles what many might think to be a place that is otherworldly, The Shimmering Shores of Vaadhoo Maldives will not disappoint the weary seeker of Nature’s finest sites.

These famous group of islands are known for being a heaven on Earth.

But Vaadhoo Island has a lot of surprises, that are revealed at night.

The mesmerizing shining water looks like a mirror, that reflects the sparkling stars above.

However, the secret is this: phytoplankton – the marine microbes – are bioluminescent and emanate the blue glow.

The species create the most romantic natural lighting in the world.

One of my favorite places to see is the Reflective Salts Flats in Bolivia.

Salar de Uyuni (or Salar de Tunupa) is the world’s largest salt flat at 10,582 square kilometers (4,086 sq mi).

It is located in the Daniel Campos Province in Potosí in southwest Bolivia, near the crest of the Andes and is at an elevation of 3,656 meters (11,995 ft) above mean sea level.

The Salar was formed as a result of transformations between several prehistoric lakes.

It is covered by a few meters of salt crust, which has an extraordinary flatness with the average altitude variations within one meter over the entire area of the Salar.

The crust serves as a source of salt and covers a pool of brine, which is exceptionally rich in lithium.

It contains 50 to 70% of the world’s lithium reserves,which is in the process of being extracted.

The large area, clear skies, and the exceptional flatness of the surface make the Salar an ideal object for calibrating the altimeters of Earth observation satellites.

The Salar serves as the major transport route across the Bolivian Altiplano and is a major breeding ground for several species of pink flamingos.

Salar de Uyuni is also a climatological transitional zone since the towering tropical cumulus congestus and cumulus incus clouds that form in the eastern part of the salt flat during the summer cannot permeate beyond its drier western edges, near the Chilean border and the Atacama Desert.

This next place has an Heavenly air, the Light pillars over Moscow have left many is wonder and awe.

This optical phenomenon recalls something out of a sci-fi movie; however, the geological formation of light pillars is quite naturally created by the reflection of sunlight or moonlight cast through ice crystals present in the Earth’s atmosphere.

The thin vertical columns appear #below a light source when the sun is low or hanging beyond the horizon.

The light pillars in Moscow are prominently visible at certain times of year, casting eerie arcs of light over the city.

So far we have covered some really extrodinary places abroad, now let’s have a look at one of these natural wonders here in the US.

The natural Saltwater Fountain off the coast of Oregon is certainly something to see.

Cape Perpetua is a large forested headland on the central Oregon Coast which projects into the Pacific Ocean.

The land is managed by the United States Forest Service as part of the Siuslaw National Forest.

For at least 6,000 years Native Americans hunted for mussels, crabs, sea urchins, and clams along the coast near Cape Perpetua.

Evidence of their lives can still be found in the huge piles of discarded mussel shells that lie along the shore near the Cape Perpetua Visitor Center.

This location is also known as Thor’s Wall.

One of my favorite places out West that I had the privilege to see during my travels was the Sandstone formations of Arizona or The Wave.

To me it appeared an artist had touched this place with a paintbrush.

The lines and colors are almost too perfect to be real, yet they are.

The Wave is a sandstone rock formation located in the United States of America near the Arizona–Utah border, on the slopes of the Coyote Buttes, in the Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, on the Colorado Plateau.

It is famous among hikers and photographers for its colorful, undulating forms, and the rugged, trackless hike required to reach it.

An ideal time to photograph The Wave is the few hours around midday when there are no shadows in the center, although early morning and late afternoon shadows can also make for dramatic photos.

After a rain storm, numerous pools form which can contain hundreds of tadpoles and fairy shrimp.

These pools can be present for several days.

This next natural wonder can be found in Kaulia Hawaii, the incredible Rainbow Eucalyptus Trees

Eucalyptus deglupta is a tall tree, commonly known as the rainbow eucalyptus, Mindanao gum, or rainbow gum.

It is the only Eucalyptus species found naturally in the Northern Hemisphere.

Its natural distribution spans New Britain, New Guinea, Seram, Sulawesi and Mindanao.

The unique multi-hued bark is the most distinctive feature of the tree.

Patches of outer bark are shed annually at different times, showing a bright green inner bark.

This then darkens and matures to give blue, purple, orange and then maroon tones

Now this next place has caused a lotof controversey and speculation as to if this is a Biblical event or just Nature playing tricks.

The Blood Falls in Anartica is a somewhat frightening specticule to witness.

Blood Falls is an outflow of an iron oxide-tainted plume of saltwater, flowing from the tongue of Taylor Glacier onto the ice-covered surface of West Lake Bonney in the Taylor Valley of the McMurdo Dry Valleys in Victoria Land, East Antarctica.

Iron-rich hypersaline water sporadically emerges from small fissures in the ice cascades.

The saltwater source is a subglacial pool of unknown size overlain by about 400 metres (1,300 ft) of ice several kilometers from its tiny outlet at Blood Falls.

The reddish deposit was found in 1911 by the Australian geologist Griffith Taylor, who first explored the valley that bears his name.

The Antarctica pioneers first attributed the red color to red algae, but later it was proven to be due only to iron oxides.

Now this next one isn’t about beauty, more on the odd side of the things we see in nature.

The spiderweb cocooned trees of Pakistan is not for the faint at heart.

In 2010, ten years’ worth of rainfall poured onto Pakistani cities and villages in less than a week, completely ravaging the affected areas.

While this flood was like others in many unfortunate ways–people were displaced, homes were ruined, rivers surged—one surprising consequence was entirely unique to the area.

Once the rain stopped, people began noticing cocooned trees covered by sticky webs.

Since it took longer than usual for the water in the flooded areas to recede, high volumes of insects, spiders and other creatures were forced to seek shelter above ground.

The result was a number of cocooned trees wrapped in spider webs so thick that they were visible from yards away.

The next stop is the Underwater Forrest of Lake Kaindy.

This marvel is anohter one that seems too beautiful to be true.

Lake Kaindy, meaning the “falling rocks/landslide lake”– is a 400-meter-long (1,300 ft) lake in Kazakhstan that reaches depths near 30 meters (98 ft) in some areas.

It is located 129 kilometers (80 mi) east-southeast of the city of Almaty and is 2,000 meters (6,600 ft) above sea level.

The lake was created as the result of an enormous limestone landslide, triggered by the 1911 Kebin earthquake.

The track to Lake Kaindy has many scenic views to the Saty Gorge, the Chilik Valley, and the Kaindy Gorge. Dried-out trunks of submerged Picea schrenkiana trees rise above the surface.

Our journey is now almost at the end and our last stop is Lake Hillier in Australia.

A delightful spot for those who love the color pink, this lake is a colorful delight that looks like cotton candy.

Lake Hillier was visited by the Matthew Flinders’ expedition on 15 January 1802.

Flinders’ journal entries are considered to be the first written records of the lake.

Flinders observed the pink lake after ascending the island’s highest peak (now called Flinders Peak), describing the lake as follows:

In the north-eastern part was a small lake of a rose color, the water of which, as I was informed by Mr. Thistle who visited it, was so saturated with salt that sufficient quantities were crystallized near the shores to load a ship. The specimen he brought on board was of a good quality, and required no other process than drying to be fit for use.













Massive Number Of US Bee Hives Have Collapsed In The Past Year (Video)

(N.Morgan) The destruction of the US honeybee population has taken a massive hit in the past year, with over 44% of all hives collapsing between April 2015 and April 2016.

This has been the second catastrophic year for colony losses since the “Beepocolypse” which started a decade ago, according to The Bee Informed Partnership, the collaboration between the US Department of Agriculture, research labs, and universities that is tracking the frightening numbers.

Honeybee hives are typically inactive during the winter before being rejuvenated in the summer in the natural cycle, but this past season, colony collapses were three times greater than the “acceptable rate”.

The varroa mite, which was first introduced into the US via Florida in 1995, plus the pesticides being used are thought to be the main causes of the collapse, although shipping them in trucks across the country to pollinate monocropped farms is also thought to stress them out.

While the crisis is believed to be largely caused by humans, people also suffer due to the fact that honeybees pollinate US$15 billion worth of food crops in the US, one third of the supply.

The little yellow and black insects are also vulnerable to lobbying from the pesticide industry, led by the controversial American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which downplayed the bee genocide last year, stating “the issue has been way overblown” and describing it as “hype.

“We’re not in a battle against nature,” Angela Logomasini of the Competitive Enterprise Institute, told the Guardian. “It’s an agricultural management issue.”

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) introduced a EU-wide ban on pesticides known as neonicotinoids, which are known to attack the nervous and immune systems of bees, leaving them open to disease.

Unfortunately, the US has not followed suit on banning these dangerous of pesticides.

While Logomasini argues that “the Europeans jumped the gun” on the matter, Friends of the Earth says ALEC is “trying to manufacture doubt and spin the science to downplay the role of pesticides.”

The video below gives a break down of the destruction of bee hives this last year in the US.


Nearly half of US honey hives collapsed in past 12 months







He Left Everything Behind to Live in a Tent. It Seems Crazy, Until You See the Inside (Video)

(N.Morgan)  Escaping the hustle and bustle of civilization to live in a tent may sound crazy, but for Bryce Langston, it’s only temporary location.

At least the tent part is only temporary. Bryce is the host of the YouTube channel, Living Big in a Tiny House.

Along with being in the middle of constructing his own tiny house, Bryce travels near and far to visit other people who have jumped headlong into the tiny home building movement.

He seeks out stellar or unusual examples of the trend and interviews the homeowners while touring the homes.

Bryce’s childhood was spent in a pretty comfortable “McMansion” in a fairly upper class, coastal suburb of Auckland, New Zealand.

He doesn’t knock his childhood home, though.

He thinks it was a perfect way to grow up, just that it’s not sustainable or sensible for everyone in the world to live in such grandeur.

Instead he’s trying to blaze a trail in novel ways of living smaller, to make room for the rest of us.

So how did he end up staying in a tent?

Bryce’s own tiny house is still under construction.

It’s a long-term project with a lot of attention to sustainability and permaculture on the property.

In the meantime, the charismatic Kiwi built a snazzy deck, an even snazzier bathroom, and set up one of the coolest tents we’ve ever seen.

The Lotus Belle tent was designed by two women who wanted to build a tent you wouldn’t mind spending a lot of time in.

Bryce put his own touch on their concept and took it to another level.

He’s moved right into his tent full-time until his house is completed.

From the sink to the stove, it’s got some pretty amazing creature comforts hiding inside.

Bryce is leading the way for people who want to live a more simple and natural life.

Who no longer want to be a rent or mortgage debt slave.

This way of life style offers freedom and independence to enjoy life in the most basic ways possible.

In the video below, Bryce gives us the grand tour of this amazing tent and shows us all of the amenities this tent boasts, including a tree house style bathroom with an adjoining bridge.

Escaping the Rent Trap – Simple Living In A Lotus Belle Tent [VIDEO]



Living Big in a Tiny House




Who Pulled The Plug On Lake Mead? Earthquake Draining Lake Mead? (Videos)



(N.Morgan) Friday morning, May 22nd, Las Vegas was rattled by a 4.8 magnitude earthquake that caused roads and bridges to be closed.

Reports on the quake seemed to only make the local papers around Las Vegas, and were treated as irreverent by the mainstream media. However, a new development has caused this story to take a puzzling turn.


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In the 36 hours that have passed since the earth quake and aftershocks, Lake Mead has had a dramatic drop in its already low water levels.

As reported by Kimber Laux And Cassandra Taloma of the Las Vegas Journal:  A 4.8 magnitude earthquake shook Las Vegas and surrounding areas Friday morning, forcing loose a rubber casing on a bridge and leading state officials to close Spaghetti Bowl interchanges for several hours.

After the Nevada Department of Transportation inspected bridges for possible structural damage, they deemed the roads safe for travel and reopened them just before 5 p.m.

Traffic had backed up for miles during the closures, which came at the start of the Memorial Day weekend.

The quake, which hit at 11:47 a.m., was centered about 23 miles south-southwest of Caliente, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The magnitude was originally reported as 5.4, but the official number was lowered twice Friday.

The ramp from southbound U.S. Highway 95 to southbound Interstate 15 was closed about 12:20 p.m. Friday, officials said.

“The joint damage was pre-existing. The tremblor simply dislodged the protective rubber encasing the bridge seam making it look much worse than it was in reality” and prompting an immediate shutdown of the ramps, NDOT engineer Mary Martini said in a news release about 3:45 p.m.

Since then, official water level data gathered at Lake Mead shows an incredible eight foot plunge in water levels following the earthquake.

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Another issue that could be provoking this sort of reaction from the Earth is the aquifer depletion processes which have been used for more than a century — the pumping out of groundwater faster than precipitation can seep back underground to replenish the amount removed.

As a result, land in more than a dozen spots has buckled and subsided.

It’s one of 40 cases of groundwater pumping detailed in a recent U.S. Geological Survey report that shows how people are draining the nation’s aquifers, often at accelerating rates.

Between 1900 and 2008, the United States has lost enough underground water to fill Lake Erie twice. That volume has jumped by 25 percent since 2000.

As the West continues to grow, with ever more people and industries vying for the same shrinking resources, the days of water policies that treat aquifers as infinite resources seem numbered.

“At some point, the problems are going to be more and more frequent in more and more places — and people may not notice until it’s really severe,” says Leonard Konikow, the USGS hydrologist who assembled the data.

Here are some of the report’s highlights (or see the data as a map or graph)



The average drop in the last ten years is one inch, so this is a troubling outlier.


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Source: Lake Mead Water Database,  h/t Professor Doom and Quasar


The sudden water drop could be because ot an equipment malfunction or broken censors, and we will be following up during the next week to see if levels normalize.

This is crucial since, as we noted previously, if the water level drops below 1,075 feet elevation by January 1, 2016, it will trigger a federal water emergency. And water rationing.

Las Vegas Review Journal reported that forecasters expect the level to drop to 1,073 feet by June, before Lake Powell would begin to release more water.

Assuming “average or better snow accumulations in the mountains that feed the Colorado River – something that’s happened only three times in the past 15 years,” the water level on January 1 is expected to be barely above the stated federal shortage level.

Even with these somewhat rosy assumptions of “average or better than average snow accumulations,” the water level would set new lows next April. But if the next winter is anything like the last few, all bets are off.

If the level drops below 1,050 feet, one of the two intake pipes for the Las Vegas Valley, which gets 90% of its water that way, will run dry.

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 Lake Mead, July 2007 to July 2014
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Lake Mead, July 2007 to July 2014

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Lake Mead, July 2007 to July 2014


Update: Moments ago the Lake Mead National Recreation Area officially denied that the online reading was accurate blaming the water level collapse on inaccurate water levels as of this morning.





Double seasonally-adjusted water levels?

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Photo credit









More Stories Contributed By N. Morgan

New Madrid Shakes On Anniversary Of Monstrous Murder



(N.Morgan) The New Madrid Fault Line has been a major concern to seismologists and researchers alike. If one big quake were to occur, it could set off a chain reaction that could be devastating to the US. Some rather odd activity occurred there recently on a terrible anniversary. “The dismemberment of [Lilburn Lewis’ slave] George’s decapitated corpse was interrupted by the most powerful U.S. earthquake ever recorded, the Great New Madrid Earthquake, which struck at 3:15 a.m. Eastern time (2:15 a.m. in the Central Standard Time observed in the western Kentucky locale of the murder). Lilburn intended to destroy the evidence by having the slaves burn George’s dismembered body, but the New Madrid earthquake caused the chimney to collapse around the fire.”




A little earthquake shook the New Madrid, Missouri region today at three minutes ’til noon Central Standard Time, the epicenter is described here as “Lilbourn, Missouri”–





One person reported at the USGS website that the earthquake at noon today was felt–




Spelled differently, that name Lilbourn/Lilbourne/Lilburn/Lilburne figures prominently as the name of Thomas Jefferson’s nephew accused of murdering a teenage slave 203 years ago (29 times seven years) tonight, December 15-16, 2014.


The names Lilbourne and Lilburn are villages in England which will be where the surname comes from. The name means ‘stream where the lillies grow’.







“Lilbourn is a city in New Madrid County, Missouri, United States. The population was 1,190 at the 2010 census.”










More Stories Contributed By N. Morgan